Kick Ace

Billy Cundiff's performance was great. So why do I hate him?

"It's good that we can lean on Billy Cundiff," running back Troy Hambrick says, without adding: because Lord knows I'm not gonna put points up for us. "Sure, we want to score touchdowns, but he came through for us. He came through for us big. That's good for our confidence, to know that we're going to score points, even if we don't get in the end zone."

Ah, but it's early, sports fans. The bye week's hero might be the midseason whipping boy. He's cloaked in history now, wrapped in an NFL record and nearly untouchable, no matter how angry he's made the lot of us, but that hardly guarantees season-long deliverance. He's just one two-miss game away from being hounded and brutally criticized. Some advice: Enjoy it now, boyo, because we're waiting.

"To be honest with you," Cundiff told various journos following the Giants victory, "it doesn't really mean much to me right now. It's something in the future I can tell my kids."

A kicker's life: The next time he misses two in a row, he'll be booed.
2003 NFL
A kicker's life: The next time he misses two in a row, he'll be booed.

Sure is. But, in the meantime, I think he really messed up here. What Carter has learned that Cundiff hasn't is that, while most of the media may be treacherous and churlish, we're also predisposed to violence. The quarterback fields our questions and makes himself available because he's well aware of how hard it would be to execute a five-step drop with a broken leg.

It would be harder still, I'm sure, to kick the ball.

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